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Has the Heavenly Call Ended? Or is it Still Wide Open? Jan 14 WEBCAST

You can now view this webcast by clicking here:

Does the Bible teach that you should be pursuing a earthly hope today, to be a part of the Great Crowd on earth?  Or does it teach that the Christian should be pursuing a heavenly hope, to be a part of the bride of Christ?   On January 14, we recorded our webcast.  Former JW and Bible Student elder David Stein interviewed a panel of Bible students (some Ex-JWs) to investigate and discuss this topic.  They answered the questions– What does the Bible teach about the Little Flock, the Great Crowd, the Other Sheep and the Heavenly Call?  The Webcast was on January 14, 2011 at 7:00 p.m. CST.

63 comments to Has the Heavenly Call Ended? Or is it Still Wide Open? Jan 14 WEBCAST

  • annelie williams

    am i missing something?…a resurrection,means you have to die first,before you get resurrected,and only then is it possible,to die a second death,unless you are of the 144,000..so given the fact you have to die first to get a resurrection,regardless,of what class you are..how is it possible that there are people surviving Armageddon,to the 1000,without dying,thus not getting resurected,and then facing a second death,which is not possable if you never died the first time,mmmmmm,somebody explain…thanks

    • Peter K. (admin)

      Annelie – Thanks. That is an excellent questions! It is great to have a deep thinker of scripture to have a discussion with. Let me summarize your question.

      How can a person die the “second death” (lets say at the end of the 1,000 years) if they lived through Armageddon and never died a first time? (Rev 20:6, 14; 21:8)

      In answer to your question, let’s try to harmonize the following scriptures:

      1 Corinthians 15:22 (NKJV) “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive.”

      Genesis 2:17 (ESV) “but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.”

      Romans 5:12 (NKJV) “Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned”

      Matthew 8:22 (NKJV) “But Jesus said to him, “Follow Me, and let the dead bury their own dead.”

      Ephesians 2:1 (ESV) “And you were dead in the trespasses and sins”

      Colossians 2:13 (ESV) “And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses,”

      ANSWER: Mankind inherits death from Adam at birth. So in essence we are all dead in our sins, experiencing the dying process. For Adam, that dying process took over 900 years. The survivors of Armageddon are all under the Adamic penalty of sin and experiencing the aging and dying process. They are all dead in their sins in Gods eyes. If they choose to follow Satan in the Little Season, this is not the death in Adam, it is a final and complete death penalty judgment from God.

      Jeremiah 31:29-30 (ESV) “29 In those days they shall no longer say: ‘The fathers have eaten sour grapes [Adam and his posterity], and the children’s teeth are set on edge.’ [Adam’s children] 30 But everyone shall die for his own iniquity. Each man who eats sour grapes, his teeth shall be set on edge.”

      In the case of the New Creation (Church / 144,000) at consecration (dedication / baptism) we die with Christ as his body members (Romans 6) and are by faith and his blood justified to life (Romans 5:1, 9) receiving the new life as New Creatures in Christ Jesus. So the New Creation has died the Adamic death when baptized into Christ and receiving the Holy Spirit. An unrepentant rejection of Christ by a holy spirit begotten New Creature would result in Second Death (Hebrews 6, 10 and Jude).

      Hope this helps. What do you think?

  • J. Hurtado

    My opinion on the number 144,000 is that it is 12,000 squared. Meaning that 12 represents the number for spiritual organizational completeness or perfection and the thousands added just makes an emphasis on the greater number. 144,000 is a symbolical number as is many other numbers in the Bible.

    • Peter K. (admin)

      J. Hurtado – Thanks for your comments. I will suggest that numbers in Revelation and Daniel are literal. For example Daniels 70 weeks or 490 days are taken literally as the number 490. Same with Daniels 2300, 1260, 1290 and 1335 days. Though as with the 70 weeks, a day represents a year. So 483 years (490-7) from the kings command to Nehemiah to build the wall (BCE 454) to Jesus baptism (AD 29). Also 7 Churches, 7 Trumpets, 7 Seals and 7 Plagues are all literal numbers, even if the Churches, Trumpets, Seals and Plagues are symbolic.

  • Gasa

    I believe that JWs do have it right that 144000 is the bride they join Christ make up new Jerusalem and rule over or on earth from Armageddon for 1000yrs. The great crowd are before heaven in earthly courtyard of anti typical temple. So they still on earth come out of tribulation as did Noah to a fire (symbolically) cleansed earth. The marriage takes place and kingdom fully starts its rule. These kings and priest are not more special than those on earth they serve, in fact they only exist because of sin and its practical undoing over 1000yrs.
    In 1935 president Ruttherford announced the new group the great crowd. For over 30 years before many knew they were not of this special bride class and did not know their place but it is clear that it was realised and announced in 1935 did not mean this group did not already exist. It is my contention that this group existed prior to Jesus coming to earth in 29ce not as great crowd but as potential sheep those with earthly hope. These would include John the Baptist and the criminal beside Jesus when he was impaied. Not sure if it was a cross or stake. This would mean that in first century congregation some were anointed and others were of the earthy hope. Some quote Jesus saying ‘all’ but it’s all in context of there specific hope. This means all the terrible sins committed in the early congregations were committed by Christians attending the churches were most likely committed by Christians who had earthly hope. Not entirely. This would mean that jesus Father could be selective throughout the centuries. We know for sure there were millions of Christians through out the 2000 yrs.
    in 2015 nearly 3000 new members chose to take the emblems, that in 10 years 10000 extra members have added to the existing 8000 who have partaken over the last 30 years. Of course the governing body feels threatened claims many are fake and informs the elders of the 120000 congregations to be suspicious of these ones. They now have excluded the anointed from contributing to the organisation and have brought in great crowd members as helpers who they can trust to follow there direction.
    My explenation is that as the ends gets close more anointed were foreseen by Jehovah as needed to protect the potential Armageddon survivors, possibly them laying down there lives proving there loyality to their brothers and to Jehovah and of course guaranteeing there heavenly reward. It’s likely many thousands will be attacked and killed by Gog and his hordes at this time preserving the full number of great crowd followers like Noah once in the ark was safe and preserved till the flood cleansed the earth. Thanks and Christian love.

    • The whole prophecy repeats, so the increase in anointed is ominous in a way. Due to the “ten virgins” judgment coming up, with JWs as the global-visible desolation epicenter (Dan8:13-14), there will soon be a symbolic “five foolish virgins”, most corrupted by the GB “man of lawlessness” also repeating.

      A 50/50 ten virgins split means the fallout will be significant. So, God is bringing in “alternates”, and more anointings will be christened through that Daniel 8:14 timing.

      The final ministry (Rev11:3 also Rev10:11 repeats) must expose the JW foretold apostasy and the “son of perdition” WTBTS leadership.

  • I could not get the webcast link to work.

    • Chris Johns

      I am starting to think it is. I means a harvest is to harvest what’s already grown. Plus we’ve had way more than 100,000 consecrate since 1914 alone.

      • Richard.Tazzyman

        Hello Chris,If you read Rev7: 1-17 you will see that there are two groups being discussed,Both with a heavenly hope,Firstly the bride(144,000) class & then the great Mutitude(Great crowd)which no man can number.Both are before the throne,one is sealed,the other not.We do not know who makes up each class or group,only the father & the son.So it is impossible & unscriptual to say the high calling is complete.Richard,Bible student Australia

        • Chris Johns

          Not entirely true. Many believed the high calling closed in 1914 with the end of the general call in 1881. I don’t believe he would call more than there are crowns available. But Russell also mentioned a group of those who would “consecrate between the ages”. What about those who would consecrate for whom no crown was available? In saying that because there’s an Innumerable amount of people in front of the throne doesn’t mean he called 100,000 for whom no crowns were available. The fact that way more than 144,000 have consecrated means many are dropping out by the thousands. I’m not saying 100% that’s it’s closed but is seems like the work is picking up to draw many to come great multitude class.

          Watchtower 1915, of 269
          “THOSE CONSECRATING BETWEEN THE AGES It is our thought that with the closing of the “door” of this Gospel age there will be no more begetting of the holy Rpirit to the spirit nature. Any afterward coming to God through consecration, before the inauguration of the restitution work, will be accepted by him, not to the spirit plane of being, but to the earthly plane. Such would come in under the same conditions as the ancient worthies who were accepted of God. The ancient worthies came in, no call being opened to them-the high calling not being yet open, and the restitution opportunities not open. But they freely gave themselves up to God without knowing what blessings their consecration would bring, except that they had the intimation that they would, in the future life, have a “better resurrec· tion” than would the remainder of the world. Our thought is that whoever under such conditions as these will make a full consecration to the Lord, to leave all to follow in his ways, and will live up faithfully, loyally, to that consecration, may be privileged to be counted as a similar class to those who preceded this Gospel age. We know of no reason why the Lord would refuse to receive those who make a consecration after the close of the Gospel oge high calling and before the full opening of the Millennium.”

          “It has probably been true of all who have entered the low gate, that they did not see clearly and understand fully the great and rich blessings which God has in store for his faithful New Creation; they merely saw, at first, the reasonable service, and afterwards learned more concerning the lengths and breadths and heights and depths of God’s goodness and their high-calling privileges. So with those now entering: they cannot fully appreciate the heavenly, spiritual things until first they have reached the point of performing their reasonable service in a full consecration. And we may be sure that any consecrating and performing a full sacrifice of themselves in the interest of the Lord’s cause after the heavenly class is complete, will find that the Lord has plenty of blessings of some other kind still to give; and that all of his blessings are for such consecrators, self-sacrificers. Possibly they may be counted in with the ancient worthies who had the sacrificing disposition that is pleasing to God, prior to the beginning of the “high calling.”

  • ian j howat

    i am near london in UK..

  • ian j howat

    im still unclear .the 12 tribes mentioned are different in names to the origional 12 .also im not clear on how they are out of the 12 tribes ifthey are gentiles that make up the 144000 .just toconfuse the issue even more i believe that pastorrussel taught that thejews would not have to become christians ie take advantage of ransom because theyare allready in a covenant with God..

    • ZionsHerald

      It’s very interesting because Pastor Russell taught that in order to take advantage of the Ransom you just need to be born. It didn’t matter what your spiritual condition was, or is, every man woman and child who has born will have an opportunity in the Millennium. That would of course include the Jews.

      It was Rutherford that changed this concept in the 1920s-1930s. He changed the teaching of the WT society stating that if you were not a Jehovah’s Witness you would die in Armageddon with no chance of a resurrection.

      • Chris Johns

        Zion’s Herald,
        Correct. It was in the Oct 15, 1923 WT that the article “The Parable of the Sheep and Goats” that Rutherford shifted the parable from Millenial Age to Gospel Age. So this would mean that many living today would be judged as goats and be everlastingly cut off before the millennium or a further chance. In was in the 1930’s book “Salvation” that Rutherford said that the ransom didn’t apply to Adam. I’ve studied both of these in depth and would love to provide a link to these.

      • just Stay Sweet and Good

        It never made sense to me that people who were not JW’s would die at armagedon because the scripture says “seek meekness and seek mildness, it may be you will be hid…” I knew many people in this catagory that were not JW’s. So……I cornered a Circuit Servant, who had just given a talk about this and asked him point blank: “So you are saying that purity of doctrine is NOT the criteria for survival but the Christian Personality is…Is this correct?” and he said yes. Well this just threw my inner light back to the ransom for ALL. That the only judgement PERHAPS at armagedon is a judgement of violation of the rainbow covenant and the sanctity of life issues. That I could live with. As far as Adam was concerned, JW’s always said: “Adam doesn’t deserve a resurection” well, that applies to ALL of Adams brats. We do not deserve anything, it is ALL grace aka underserved kindness that is extended to those who are lost and thats ALL of us. It’s grace, grace and more grace and it surely amazing

        • ian j howat

          yes totaly agree .i also had a though about the remark in revelation re the 144000 they being virgins .if they were all jewish they would be ina spiritual sense as they were in true worship before becoming christians so were neveradulterated with false doctrine. but that would not fit inwith the explanation that we already agreed on.its a way of explaining though…i get the comments about Rutherfords teaching .i have some of his books. in the harp it seems to make sense.but later on he changes the basic teachings ..thanks for reply..do you have any comment or opinio on Robert kings on u tube.his ideas i find very confusing.seems he supports jws. but not the GB..

          • ian j howat

            to add i find typing commentsdificult as this site is so small not mobile friendly..

          • Chris Johns


            Thanks for your response. I’ve heard the the twelve tribes are Jews. This doesn’t seem right. I heard many times that the twelve tribes names each have a meaning. For example after Judah was born it was stated “Now I will praise Jehovah” (Genesis 29:35) . When Reuben was bored it was stated “Surely Jehovah has looked upon my affliction.” (Gen 29:32). And so on. If you take each of the names meanings in the order they are given in Revelation you get

            “ Now I will praise Jehovah for he has looked on me and granted good fortune. I am happy because of my wrestling, God is making me to forget. God hears me and is joined to me. He has purchased me a dwelling and will add to me, the Son of His right hand.”

            Perfect depiction of Jesus and his bride.

    • just Stay Sweet and Good

      If you look at the end of Ezekiel you will notice that all of the 12 tribes are back in their original order. Brother Russell made the comment that this shows that satan can never permanently thwart Jehovah God’s original purpose to have these twelve be the leaders of the earthly phase of the kingdom as soon as their own redemption and cleansing is complete. As for the Revelation roll call, it only mentions those tribes that remained relatively loyal and we not totally corrupted, plus Joseph’s two sons got the double portion of the firstborn because Joseph was especially faithful. This obviously is a spiritual roll call of the congregation of the first born, who will join their messiah in the heavenly realm to oversee the millennium from that special vantage point.

  • ian j howat

    thanks for reply yes you have reminded me of what i read in divine plan of the ages .i have the book kindly sent for one dollar from bible students in USA .it does make a lot of sense..so basicaly im right in my assumpsion that all christians are spirit born ..heavenly life subject of course to the lords acceptance ..the ranso m is then available to all..i am getting used to the new application of new testament to all christians not just 144000 as we were taught .being denied a relatiinship with jesus has been my problem for years

  • ian j howat

    i believe that there are true christians in many church groups and some who do not belong to any church group..after much thought it makes no sense to me that over 2000 years there have been only 144000 christians..and there is no indication in the new testament that there are two classes of christians. since i woke up from WT mind control i have becone so close to jesus that i feel totaly different to how i felt in 50 years as a jw ..we were never alowed to have a relationship with jesus..many jws waking up feel the same.there is no way christians can be limited to only 144000 .in the book of acts we are told tgat 3000 were added in just one day! so over 2000 years it must equate to millions.

    • ZionsHerald

      Thank you Ian for a very open and honest perspective of the Jehovah’s Witness interpretation that only 144,000 individuals being given a heavenly reward. I completely agree with you that there will be more than 144,000 with a heavenly reward.

      Thankfully there are many Scriptures which Illustrate that this reward is in store for an uncountable group of people.

      Revelation 19 speaks of a great crowd in heaven. Rev. 19:1 specifically states that this group is in heaven itself. This is a group that is invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb but is not the bride herself. They sing praises regarding the Father who reigns and the bride who made herself ready.

      Revelation 19:6-7
      6 Then I heard something like the voice of a great multitude and like the sound of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, saying, “Hallelujah! For the Lord our God, the Almighty, reigns.
      The marriage of the Lamb
      7 “Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His bride has made herself ready.”

      While Scripture defines more than 144,000 with a heavenly reward, as can be seen, not all who receive that reward will be the Bride of Christ.

      The Bride of Christ are the ones who will reign with Christ over the masses of mankind and teaching them righteousness when God’s judgments will be in the earth.

      Revelation 20:4-5
      4 Then I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received the mark on their forehead and on their hand; and they came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.

      “For when the earth experiences Your judgments The inhabitants of the world learn righteousness.” Isaiah 26:9

    • There are WT glitches you can find from the Bible text. For example, in Revelation 7 the “144000” are “out of” the 12 tribes. The GB error-masters do not fix the glitch, that in their teaching the 144,000 are spiritual Israel. The “12 tribes” would have to be included for the 144,000 are “out of” that greater “nation”.

      But the GB are experts at avoiding glitches by simply ignoring them and teaching stumbling error as policy instead. They call it “doctrinal unity” but it is actually doctrinal disintegration.

  • kevin davis

    I think God is in control and his son today controls who has puts on love and follow the lamb that has learned how to have that love in there lives they are not greedy or ever thing about self and they never lie or try to mislead people., As the world does., That;s who makes the first cut and they do not believe false religion things they believe.,bible truth they are not know it all people as some of the world try to be they do there best to help people learn bible truth;s The calling may still be today.,They choose God,. and he chooses them,. thru Christ.,

  • Terry

    much appreciated.

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